It has been awhile and 4th year is now about 1/4 over. I spent 2 months doing away-rotations in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics in Arizona during the beginning of the year. Since, I spent a month studying for and completing the second part of my “board” exams and I am now on my Emergency Medicine rotation! A few talking points:
1. I am going into Internal Medicine! I really fell in-love with this field during my final rotation of 3rd year. Everything from the pathology that we see in the hospital to the continuity of care in the outpatient setting really made the difference for me. Further, I just love talking about the nuances of medicine/pathophysiology that make Internal Medicine so interesting like subtle EKG changes, fluctuations of lab values that are suggestive of disease… etc. Right now, I think I will complete my 3-year service commitment following residency and then jump into a fellowship. I’m really excited about what the future may hold.
2. I’ve applied to residency! Yep, September 15th medical students around the country logged on and submitted residency applications after months of compiling Letters of Recommendation, board scores, writing personal statements and volunteering experiences. I feel really good about the application that I put together and I hope to join a residency program that allows me to grow into a fantastic physician. Now, just to wait for interview invitations :) Wish me luck!
3. I took USMLE Step 2CK/CS! Whew! Glad to have those complete. CK or Clinical Knowledge is a 9hr exam that is composed of 8, 1-hr question blocks of clinical knowledge material typical of rotations from the various 3rd year medical school rotations. THIS IS AN ENDURANCE TEST. I feel good about it, scores are released next week…. again, wish me luck! CS or Clinical Skills is another 8-9hr exam that consists of 12 standardized patient interactions. It has always been my passion to provide excellent patient-care and I feel VERY strong in this area.
4. Emergency Medicine Review- This rotation is challenging for a unique set of reasons. First, you are challenged to (within seconds or minutes) determine how sick a patient is. This could me a patient that is presenting with shortness of breath (SOB) because of a simple viral upper respiratory infection or a collapsed lung or pulmonary embolism… up to us to determine! Also, the way that we present patients to faculty is truncated when compared to presentations in Internal Medicine (and most other rotations too). For instance, past medical history/family history/surgical history are often under emphasized as compared to the patient’s chief complaint, history of present illness and physical exam/vitals. Also, you get to do minor procedures in the emergency room! I’ve sutured up more lacerations than I can count in this month, I enjoy this aspect of EM! Finally, this rotation has helped me learn how to better diagnose and manage disease with optimal consideration of evidence-based medicine as to minimize unnecessary or poorly sensitive/specific tests! Ultimately, I know that I have grown so much as a student-doctor as a result of the various challenges in this rotation.
5. Gold Humanism Honor Society- This is a National Organization that was established in the early 1990’s to recognize students, residents and faculty for compassionate, humanistic qualities in patient-care. Indiana University saw it fit to induct me into this wonderful society this past week! I feel very fortunate to have been given this honor and I am further excited to know that compassion and humanism are now awarded and recognized! After all, if nothing else…. I aim to make a huge difference in the lives that I am able to touch through medicine.
That is all for now, I will update you all as the year progresses. I’ll leave you with a quote that I find to be fairly powerful and appropriate. “I didn’t come this far…. to only come this far!”- Anonymous